Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Find Your Niche, Keep Your Niche, and Try Not to Scratch It!

Cable and Satellite TV sure is getting interesting these days, because the networks are scrambling around trying to get who they can as often as they can for as long as they can. In the past few years a lot of networks (AMC,TLC,GSN,Headline News,MSNBC,& G4/Tech TV to name a few) have given up their "Niche" programming in order to somehow obtain a larger audience and please the masses. So instead of standing out and being different and pleasing a number of core fans that can form a base and basically with them and a website can do the marketing for you, they get basic programs or what some are calling "dumbed down" programs. AMC is the worst offender at this. AMC used to stand for American Movie Classics, but no longer. They felt that Turner Classic Movies was doing a better job(which they were) and gave up, shortened their name to AMC and now play such classic movies like tonight: Jaws III (I'm betting not in 3D like the original theatrical version) followed by Jaws:The Revenge! If that wasn't bad enough, they are edited with commercials!!! That sure is appeasing the masses. Because that's what most people want when they are spending close to $1400 a year for cable or satellite service in the first place is crappy movies, edited with commercials.
Now I can't write an article like this without talking about my favorite king of contradiction, the great sports network that I will never mention by name, but their initials are E.S.P.N. Yes that's right the network that has every cable and satellite company by the you know whats, feels that a fantatical sports fan base is not enough, and is getting in on the "dumbed down" programming. It seems like they are having a hard time figuring out what to put on their main network(Here's a hint:SHOW SPORTS!!)! "Hmmm, how about on a Thursday prime time let's show the movie "Days of Thunder"(Great, a crappy sports movie edited with commercials! SHOW SPORTS!). "How about this, we get teammates together and make a show like The Newlywed Game"(How about this:SHOW SPORTS!)! "Wait, I've got another one, we get this fat guy who knows all about sports trivia, and others guys to try and beat him(SHOW SPORTS INSTEAD!!). And we can't figure out what to do overnight, so let's just show the same Sportscenter for 12 hours straight(why is it so hard to SHOW SPORTS!)! Even Sportscenter has reduced itself to using old network news ploys to retain viewers. "Shaq didn't win the MVP, Was Racism involved?" only to have two people and the announcer with great hair to say that it wasn't.
This is old school economics that says there is a fixed number of channels, and fixed number of viewers, that don't apparently know what to watch and when.
But they should use the new school of economics that says, because of technology there are an unlimited number of viewers with all kinds of viewing needs and wants (and note to all networks, infomercials is NOT one of them), just let me know when it's on, and if I can't watch then, I can record or TIVO it! Really not that hard folks. And since I always like to leave things on a positive note, the one network that seems to be doing an okay job at least is GSN, formally Game Show Network. When they started they showed nothing but old game shows, but when they got bought out by Sony, and since they are a major corporation, they needed to make a profit, so out went the old shows and in with some crappy new ones. But now they seem to have a good mix of old shows (Match game(the best), Family Feud, Pyramid(Dick Clark)) with new ones that aren't as crappy. And finally you don't see CSPAN doing cooky things to try attract an audience, and they now have 3 channels plus the internet!!
The moral of this story and life is, don't be afraid to be different!
That's all I have today,

Friday, May 06, 2005

Go Ahead, Ask me Anything!
It's Friday! And I'm stuck at the Madison Airport until midnight, so I'm opening up the phone lines (that's an expression) and allowing you the viewing/listening audience to ask me anything! You can use the comment section or email me an audio question by recording your question and sending in .mp3 format to radioaffliction@gmail.com and I'll put it on the next Radioaffliction!
In the comments section is examples of previous Ask Me Anythings!

Enjoy and thanks

When Gold is Not Good Enough!

Here is a story close to home for me! Marquette University in Milwaukee ever since it changed it's nickname for it's sports programs from Warriors to Golden Eagles waaaay back in 1993, has had complaints from students and mostly alumni. This all started when the University got complaints from local Native American groups about Marquette's use of their logo and mascot. At least that's my opinion of what they should have been upset about. I'm really not sure what claim they have to the term "Warrior", indeed some of them were, but the Vikings were warriors, Attila the Hun, Constantine, The Crusaders, Hey George Washington was even a warrior, fought in two of them, Eisenhower for crying out loud, and what about Darth Vader! And with nicknames like Redskins, Indians, and Braves out there, whining about Warriors is pretty thin. But Marquette is a Catholic run school and therefore principle is more important than principal, and so bye-bye to Warriors and hello Golden Eagles. The University doesn't get it however, they think people don't like Golden Eagles, and that's not true for the most part. What they don't like is that it's not the Warriors. So bowing to pressure, and the fact that some very nice people were willing to make (sizeable)donations if the University changed back to Warriors, they decided they would have a panel look at changing the name. I think everyone thought that if they were going to change the name, it would go back to the Warriors, or after some careful study say, "You know right now isn't the right time, being at war and everything, and the Native Americans still aren't really happy about it, so we aren't going to anything right now, it's the Golden Eagles, so just live with it". I could accept that, and I think most people would still grumble a little then move on with life after a little while, but what does the Univerisity do. They make a major press conference, send out thousands of letters to Alumni to announce the new nickname and logo to: (get ready Warriors fans!)
THE GOLD!!!!!!!!!
Yes that's right ladies and Gentlemen, your new team the Marquette Gold!
It does make sense in one regard, they are moving into the Big East Conference, there will be the big game with The Orange of Syracuse for the battle of the Orange and Gold! (Excited yet!)
But so far only the University is happy with the change, although I haven't heard from the Native Americans yet, everyone else is still up in arms. I'm surprised there isn't a religous nut out there complaining of a nickname that has ties to materialism. Give it time.
My advice to Marquette is this, your students and alumni are your life blood, kind of like your children or pets. And while you try to guide them and teach them rights and wrongs, there are just times the only way you can shut them up, is to GIVE THEM WHAT THEY WANT!
Go Warriors!
Have a great weekend,

Monday, May 02, 2005


Bummer #1

I was a little sad to see that Dr. Gene Scott passed away a couple weeks ago. In this crazy world in which I am trying to come to grips, and find understandings, especially in Religion, I always found Dr. Scott a little refreshing and entertaining. I first came across Dr. Scott on my grandparents satellite dish, and then on a over the air station in San Francisco, and I just thought it was interesting how he would sit and smoke his cigar waiting for people to call, and how he could get everyone in his studio to stand at attention, "Yes SIR!!". I don't think he affected my beliefs one way or the other, but if I was ever bored, he was always on the air, and I'm glad that his website still broadcasts his shows! Click here to check it out! It looks like his daughter Dr. Melissa Scott has taken over, she has the same demeanor, but is much cuter!* (* check update below)

Farewell Dr. Scott!
This link has more info on the passing of Dr. Scott

Bummer #2

With the upcoming election in the United Kingdom on Thursday, there has been no Prime Ministers questions the last couple of weeks, so another loss of entertainment. But it has brought up an interesting question. Prime Minister Tony Blair's approval rating according to the funny papers is at an all time low, however in the election the voters are not voting for a particular person, but the minister in their district on the political party to which they are affiliated with. And which party has the most ministers the leader of that party becomes the Prime Minister. So what do you do, in my district the Labour party candidate could be a cool guy, but I don't want Tony Blair to be Prime Minister, do I vote for the conservative candidate even though he is a dufus. In some ways I suppose it makes as much sense as our Electoral College. So good luck U.K. and happy voting!
In the meantime CSPAN is showing the Canadian Prime Ministers questions, and it is extremely disappointing. I have never swore on this blog, and this is pretty tame, but all it is, is one Bitch session. What is the point! The opposition leader starts the questioning, and I'm paraphrasing, "Prime Minister, isn't it true that you suck, and all your programs suck, and that our programs are better, but because you suck, you won't even listen to our proposals because you're too busy sucking all the time!"
And the Prime Minister responds "That is a fabrication, I can't possibly suck that bad, because you suck worse!" And on and on and on. And to further tick off an American watching, a minister will come on and tell the Prime Minister he sucks in French! It was like watching a Sports reporter asking a player or coach after a loss "Why did you lose the game?" Duh, what do they really expect them to say? "We suck, or They scored more points than us!" The point I'm trying to make is, what is the point! If you are going to ask questions, ask a question that has some sort of a chance of getting an answer. Britain gets a little tense sometimes, but it actually seems like they are trying. I didn't understand one thing in Canada(despite the French) that showed they were trying to make any progress or solve anything. I could be wrong so if anyone in Canada can help me out I would be grateful.

Bummer #3

Ever since I was in high school I developed a nickname Claymate (my last name is Clay if you didn't catch it), so a young lady who had the privilage being my special friend would be a claymate. Well I find out now that fans of Clay Aiken are called "Claymates". This is completely unacceptable! I could wait it out, and hope his career tumbles, but hey Barry Manilow is still around, and I'm an easy going guy, so for now I have changed my email address to radioaffliction@gmail.com
Probably works better for the site, and when the show comes back on the air!

Well that's all I have for today,
Until Next time,

* Update:
Turns out Melissa Scott is actually Dr. Scott's wife. Check the comments for all the details

Sunday, May 01, 2005

The Truth Can Set You Free! Really It Can! Trust Me It Can Work!

Let's take the story of poor Jennifer Wilbanks since everyone thought that's what I wanted on my TV on a Saturday afternoon. A 32 year old medical assisant from Georgia who was supposed to get married yesterday to John Mason. But hold on! Jenny has plans of her own. Maybe she has come to her senses, well aparrently not completely, but something is on her mind that says, "I've been thinking about this and I know you're going to hate me, but I don't think I can do this, I know everything is paid for, and I know I love you, but I just don't want to get married right now."
Now it's that so hard to say!
Of course it is, but let's dig a little deeper into this. If you have followed some of my posts in the past you'll find I've written about relationships and people who fall in love and get married because they believe they have to, not that they really delve deep into their soul about what they want to be and who they want to be with. Now think of the pressure of an unmarried 32 year old woman who is with a nice enough guy. Pressure from family, friends, and even ones self to say, "Hey, if not this guy, who?" So what is a person supposed to do when you have something this big on your mind, and you don't think telling the truth will help you out. Runaway! I can see that, but hoaxing a kidnapping, that's about 27th on my list of things to do in that situation.

Radioaffliction Classics with The Bummin Cousins: Delightfully Weird Streaming!

The Bummin Cousins Peter A. Clay and Jim Reid are back with a wonderful podcast about the things found in Thrift Stores and Flea Markets. Cl...